How to build a high-powered microscope with Lego and cheap smartphone lenses

Lego microscope
(Image credit:

It’s incredible how much power we're carrying around in our pockets, without even realizing it. For instance, did you know modern smartphones have lenses so advanced that you can use them to see individual cells?

Recently, scientists at the Universities of Göttingen and Münster in Germany decided to take advantage of this. And so they found a way to combine these lenses – which they bought for just a few dollars each – inside a Lego structure, to build a low-cost but high-resolution microscope. 

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Tom May

Tom May is a freelance writer and editor specializing in art, photography, design and travel. He has been editor of Professional Photography magazine, associate editor at Creative Bloq, and deputy editor at net magazine. He has also worked for a wide range of mainstream titles including The Sun, Radio Times, NME, T3, Heat, Company and Bella.